Friday, December 24, 2004

US security officials: no more Al Qaeda secret cells in USA

This is either wishing thinking, ignorance or hubris beyond imagination---how does the CIA---who "doesn't do" domestic counterintelligence know whether there are active cells in the US?

This from Robert Spencer at Jihad Watch

Interesting assertion. I hope they're right. But I remember the eight years between the first World Trade Center bombing and the successful one, and I suspect it would be unwise to think that there is nothing to be concerned about here. "Al Qaeda 2.0: Where will it strike next?," from, with thanks to Fanabba:

Michael Scheuer is a former chief of the CIA's counter-terrorism centre's bin Laden unit.
Scheuer, who resigned from the CIA in November after 22 years of service, believes there is a need to build pressure on Al Qaeda inside Afghanistan, and not in Pakistan because Islamabad is already doing a lot in the war against terrorism.

He thinks the Al Qaeda leadership is still planning new attacks in Pakistan and Saudi Arabia while hiding in Afghanistan. Many areas in southern and eastern Afghanistan, he added, are not under the Hamid Karzai administration's control.

US offers $5 million for Al Qaeda trainer

He also said Europe, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan and Pakistan seem to be Al Qaeda's new targets in the near future.

Other US security officials are confident that there are no more Al Qaeda secret cells in the country and Osama bin Laden cannot organise new attacks like 9/11 in New York or Washington. But they too warn that America's allies in the war against terrorism are still vulnerable to Al Qaeda attacks.

The United Kingdom will increase the number of its troops in Afghanistan under NATO cover early next year. The UK and Pakistan will increase pressure on the Taliban in southern Afghanistan through coordinated operations. US troops will increase the pressure on Al Qaeda in eastern Afghanistan.

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